I often ask myself, when did zombies become the pop culture icons they are today? If the trend of zombie films, books, video games, artwork, and conventions continue, the living dead are sure to surpass baseball as America’s pastime. Yes, zombies have been around for a long time, but what happened to the slow, moaning corpses that stumbled their way into horror flicks in the 1960s and 70s? The zombie of today has the same fan base as Justin Bieber and could probably run for President. I blame Michael Jackson for teaching them how to dance in 1983.
The current zombie craze brings with it a fascination with the possibility of a zombie apocalypse. It seems that a majority of the country actually wants the dead to rise up, seize our cities, and bite our neighbours. And though it doesn’t seem like such a terrible alternative at the moment, would it really change much in this country? In fact, if the zombie apocalypse were to occur tomorrow, would we even notice a difference? Here are four reasons why the zombie apocalypse would not affect the current state of affairs in America:
1) The Unemployment Rate = The Projected Survival Rate The current unemployment rate in the United States is 9.1%. That means that approximately nine out of 100 people do not have jobs. That 9.1% also seems like an accurate survival rate if the zombie apocalypse were to take place. Sounds reasonable enough. So, about nine people in a room of 100 would have the intelligence and endurance to survive the first wave of the drooling, hungry undead. The 0.1% leaves room for one of the survivors to have six toes on one foot or be in the very early stages of the first trimester.
Of course, as time moved forward and the zombie population grew, the survival rate would either go up or down. With more zombies, it may be harder to survive, however, with more experience as a survivor and a chance to study the zombie’s habits, it could become easier. It really is hard to say, just like unemployment. At least during the zombie apocalypse everyone would know his or her role in the economy. Either hunt or be hunted. In either case you have a full-time job.
According to the Bureau of labour Statistics, “In September, 1,495 mass layoff actions affected 153,229 workers.” According to an imaginative source that somehow still prints headlines during the zombie apocalypse, “In September, 1,495 undead, flesh eating corpses infected 153,229 people.” Either way, good luck out there people.
2) The Western Republican Presidential Debate Depicted Men Trying to Rip Out Other Men’s (and One Woman’s) Throats If there is one zombie currently residing among us, it must be current Governor of Texas, Rick Perry. If I’m not mistaken, zombies tend to go straight for the kill, without having any real strategy or concern for their own well-being. A true zombie will go after the most alive looking person in a crowd and try to rip their throat out, regardless of who is watching, or if Anderson Cooper is only a stone’s throw away. Unless my eyes deceived me on October 18th, when I tuned into the Western Republican Presidential Debate, the zombie apocalypse is real, and Rick Perry is the hungriest zombie of all. Former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney was able to remain part of the 9.1% despite feverish attacks by the rabid Perry. Everyone else who participated seemed to make it out alive, however, judging by Herman Cain’s most recent campaign ad, I would say he has most definitely been infected.
3) Children May Have a Doomed Future Regardless For those of you who are wondering about the children, and how damaging growing up during the zombie apocalypse would be, ask yourself what’s worse: $900 a credit at a private university or 40 bucks for 25 rounds of buckshot for a twelve-gauge, which most likely wouldn’t cost you anything since odds are the owner of the gun shop would be dead. In America, student loan debt has surpassed credit card debt, and according to a National Postsecondary Student Aid study, students owe around $23,000 after graduation. With debt like that, a salary gap that is only increasing in favour of the rich, and a 9.1% unemployment rate, how bad does no debt, no use for monetary funds, and a survival rate of 9.1% really sound?
In fact, there may even be some advantages for children and families if the zombie apocalypse were to grace us with its presence. Growing up during the zombie apocalypse, as opposed to attending four years of college, would mean no freshman fifteen, a lower risk of binge drinking, drug use, unwanted pregnancy, and sexually transmitted diseases. The stress of midterms and last minute papers would no longer exist. Also, if your entire family were to survive, there would be more family time than ever, as you crawled through sewage systems by day and camped out in overturned vehicles by night. Talk about bonding.
4) Everything is Occupied Anyway If zombies have one talent worth bragging about, it’s their ability to occupy. The act of occupying a wide open space for countless days, regardless of the weather, food, or if humans are beating them down with nightsticks and shooting them with tear gas canisters, is innate within a zombie. They were born to occupy, the way Bruce Wayne was born to be Batman and the aforementioned Perry was born to be a zombie. Perhaps the current zombie craze has had a subliminal effect on humans, causing them to practice and act out the zombie’s most effective skill of occupying. Zombies would definitely make the best protesters. If the zombie apocalypse were to occur tomorrow, a world already suffering from overpopulation would also be afflicted with over-occupation. Two conditions that we are certainly not equipped to deal with simultaneously.
Perhaps zombies have become so popular for the simple fact that they are cool and dead. Most things aren’t entertaining when they are dead. Maybe people admire the zombie’s resiliency or ability to part with material goods. It could be that most of us would like to test our own limits and courage, and what better way than extracting limbs with a machete and not getting charged for murder. Though, I still blame Michael Jackson for infecting zombies with the ability to shimmy and moonwalk.
Regardless of the reason, as protests continue in almost every major city from Oakland to New York, and as campaign trails blaze on (some quite literally), and college debt and unemployment soar high enough to reach the heavens, it almost starts to make sense that so many of today’s bright minds would find repose in fantasies of surviving an uprising of the undead, because who wants to deal with the act of survival that is happening right now, in a country that has proven itself too alive for its own good.
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